Featured Stories

Pioneers manhandle the defending state champs

Schafer, Kinney, Tinsley play pivotal roles

EUGENE - The top-ranked Oregon City Pioneers took no hostages in Thursday's Class 6A state quarterfinal boys basketball game with South Medford, as they breezed to a 70-49 victory over the second-ranked and defending state champion Panthers.

The Pioneers put on a clinic, out-scoring the Panthers 20-6 in the first quarter and never looking back. Oregon City led from wire-to-wire and the Pioneers stretched the lead to as many as 25 points by early in the fourth quarter.

South closed to within 35-25 on a 3-pointer by Zach Haveman to end the first half.

But the Pioneers scored the first nine points of the second half, and the outcome was never in doubt after that.

The Pioneers put on a show at both ends of the floor. Defensively, they held the Panthers to a season-low .246 shooting percentage, as the defending state champs found the mark on only 17-of-69 shots from the floor.

The Pioneers held South Medford star point guard Michael Harthun to eight points on 3-of-16 shooting.

Harthun was playing on a sore ankle that he'd sprained a week earlier, but many of his difficulties came from trying to get around Oregon City 6-10 big man Sammy Schafer.

Schafer ruled on the inside, hauling down 16 rebounds, rejecting three shots, scoring 10 points - on perfect 4-for-4 shooting, and dishing out three assists.

The Pioneers played an aggressive game on offense, scoring 42 points in the paint and 10 more on the fast break.

Oregon City senior point guard Brad Tinsley sparked the offense with a game-high 21 points and eight assists.

Bryce Kinney had a big night for the Pioneers, hitting 8-of-12 shots from the floor - with two 3-pointers - for a career-high 18 points. Kinney was on the finishing end of several fast breaks.

Kamal Smith (11 points) joined Tinsley, Schafer and Kinney in double figures in scoring.

The Pioneers converted with .519 (28-of-54) success from the floor and with .588 (10-of-17) efficiency from the charity stripe.

South Medford 6-6 post E.J. Singler was the only Panther to reach double figures in scoring. But Singler had to work for his 15 points. He was only 4-of-19 from the field.

South Medford (23-6) went on to place sixth at the state tournament, losing to Tualatin 47-43 in the fourth-place final, after dropping sixth-ranked Central Catholic 66-60 in the fourth-place semifinals.